Most of the time, if you are ill, it is best to see your primary care physician if you have one. However, there are times when it would be better for you to go to a health clinic. If you do not have a doctor you see regularly, deciding whether to go to a doctor's office or clinic can be confusing. To help you decide where you should go, consider the following benefits offered by most clinics.
Most doctors' offices are booked pretty heavily. Getting an appointment to see your own doctor may take a week or more. When you are ill, waiting a week to get a prescription or treatment is not a good idea. You can go to a health clinic and be seen the same day. By the time you could see your doctor, you can be healthy again.
Sometimes, your own doctor will refer you to a specialist to treat a health problem. The doctors at a clinic have the same ability. When you need a specialist, the extra wait of getting an appointment can be very harmful to the situation.
Fees Based on Income
If you do not have any medical insurance, going to a health clinic can save you money. Many clinics offer a sliding scale for what they charge. The cost of your exam and treatment will be based on your income. You will not be stuck with a huge bill that will follow you around forever.
There is need to be seen by your doctor if all you need is immunizations. Health clinics will often offer free or reduced rate immunizations. These are good for school admittance, travel, or just to stay up-to-date. Be sure to get a copy of the shots given so your medical records are kept current.
Travel, Work or School Physicals
When all you need is to have a quick physical, going to a health clinic is a good option. You can be seen the day you walk in, and have the record needed for your boss or school. Many clinics offer a reduced rate for school physicals over the summer. If you or your child will be playing any sports, find out if a physical is required and have it done before the new year starts.
To Find a Primary Care Physician
If you are looking for a primary care physician, but are not sure where to start, a health clinic is a good option. Most clinics not only accept regular patients, but the doctors who work there often have a practice of their own. Go to the clinic to find out if you feel comfortable with a certain doctor, and then, if you like, become a regular patient.
Health clinics have a definite place in your health care routine. The important thing to remember if you do have a normal physician is to make sure that the records from the clinic become a part of your permanent medical file. Do not be afraid to go to a clinic because your doctor is not there. You may find you prefer the clinic and change your primary physician.
For more information about the difference between clinics and physician's offices, or to learn more about the services offered at a clinic, contact one like Entira Family Clinics.